5 to Try: Wine Bars

Need an alternative to your usual gin and tonic? Go low-key at one Seattle's newest crop of wine bars--they're more mellow than other after-work watering holes and offer a by-the-glass tour of Washington's greatest export. Go ahead, wear your purple teeth with pride.

Updated: October 14, 2009

Vino Venues

Black Bottle

2600 First Ave, Seattle, WA 98121

This minimalist, SoHo-styled restaurant and bar specializes in appetizing, shareable plates paired with generous drinks. With small bites like pork belly matched with kimchi, seared scallops and carne asada tacos, appetites for both good food and good wine are sated. Bonus: The diverse menu at this cozy Belltown spot is available all day after 11:30am with options for lunch, an afternoon snack or dinner.

The Local Vine

1410 12th Ave, Seattle, WA 98122

Nearly 100 by-the-glass options, a cozy fireplace and free Wi-Fi set this Belltown wine bar apart from the rest. Not to mention the $21 truffle popcorn and the delectable menu of dishes like pernod butter poached prawns. Sleek and modern with high ceilings and extensive wine menus separated by glass and by bottle, The Local Vine is stylishly true to its roots.

Portalis Wine Shop & Wine Bar

5205 Ballard Ave NW, Seattle, WA 98107

This Ballard Ave wine shop lets you peruse the aisles for vino by day, and try out their wares at night. The knowledgeable staff will help you pick out the right wine to pair with their creative menu of small bites and desserts. Portalis is intimate without pretension, and as cozy as your own living room--but this time you don't have to do the dishes.

Bricco Della Regina Anna

1525 Queen Anne Ave N, Seattle, WA 98109

Classy Seattleites and in-the-know oenophiles frequent this elegant wine bar at the top of Queen Anne. Whether you're eating dinner or just stopping in after a night on the town, Bricco offers a relaxed and warm environment for trying new wines or sipping old favorites.

Poco Wine + Spirits

1408 E Pine St, Seattle, WA 98122

Tucked away on 14th and E Pine, this two story wine bar is a great alternative to the bustling bars two blocks away. The wine list here offers affordable quality and spotlights up and coming wineries, in addition to the big names. Nosh on some truffle mac and cheese while you sip a full-bodied red wine.